C-47 Cargo Door Paratrooper Drop System


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Hope everyone is good today.

I've been trying to figure out a servo-operated door system for the FT 60" C-47... as I've had a bag of 3.5" paratroopers from Amazon and think it would be pretty impressive to have a few of them spill out the back door of a Dakota over our flying field. There's a few different ideas out there on the internet, but none really apply to my limited fabrication skills and the unique challenges of putting a side door in a foamboard airplane. After a few days of piddly-farting around, here's what I've come up with.

I'm using a metal-gear servo to push an offset lever made out of thin basswood on a barbecue skewer axis that has been sunk into the center foam. The lever is hooked up to a piece of curved foamboard "door" that pushes/pulls through the half of the bulkhead that has been removed. A thin piece of plywood supports the outer skins where the bulkhead used to be. The foam door runs along a groove made by a large, oversized plastic straw that has been cut (about 90* of the circle) to provide a channel for the foam to slide back and forth in.

From the outside, it doesn't look too bad. I even cut a fake door to fill in the space when I'm not trying to drop the 101st on St. Mere Eglise and just want to fly the plane (which will be most times, probably). No idea if it will work, or what how that extra weight will affect the flying characteristics . Each trooper weighs about an oz., so I doubt I can put too many back there.

Anybody with experience doing this kind of thing is welcome to chime in. I'd love to see how the rest of you made this work. I'll let you know if mine does. Links to videos are below.




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